Limpopo Premier Stanley Mathabatha says mining companies flouting COVID-19 regulations will face consequences. He was speaking during a site inspection at Mogalakwena Platinum Mine in Mokopane on Friday.
Almost half of coronavirus infections in the province have been reported at mines.
There have been no cases at the Mogalakwena Mining complex since its reopening, but Anglo-American Platinum has reported one case at its Amandelbult Chrome Mine in Thabazimbi.
In the video below, the Limpopo Health MEC briefs the media after mine workers tested positive for COVID-19:
Anglo-American Platinum operations have been increased to 80% of production. Mine CEO Natascha Viljoen says this was allowed by government.
“I think as far as the scale of activity our mine is concerned, it is important to note that we have been allowed by government and the regulation to ramp open pit operations at 100% and our underground operations to 50%. Our approach though is one of risk, so that to that extent Mogalakwena who has been allowed to go 100%. We are still running at below 80%.”
Fifty eight percent of coronavirus cases in Limpopo are at mines. Mathabatha says the inspection was conducted to check the level of compliance to regulations at times.
“We are visiting a number of mines just to check on the level of compliance and see what it is that we can assist them with. In terms of checking up their compliance and in case they are not complying, there will be repercussions also. But our observation since we came here is that most, 90% if not 93% of the things we wanted to see we are happy with.”
Earlier this week, the Premier announced that the province was ready to move to Level 3 of the lockdown.